Improved immigrant workers law the need of the hour in Canada
Posted on October 31, 2016
The Canadian lawmakers are in favour of upgrading the existing rules that govern the immigrant workforce of the nation. A committee of the Canadian parliament that is scrutinizing the Temporary Foreign Worker (TFW) Program intends to make the law friendlier for immigrants and has suggested some progressive changes for their rights. On the other hand, the program needs to be restructured to cater to the welfare of the workers in Canada who are lowly skilled.
The fast food sector is an industry that hired the maximum number of immigrant workers. They, in fact, complained to the government regarding their inability to employ Canadians for the job. In the rural areas, the pay for the fast food worker was hiked to a considerable extent in order to employ workers who were attracted by the salary of the oil sand sector. In spite of this, the industry had to hire many Filipino immigrant workers.
The jobs in the fast food industry are challenging and require higher skills sets than is often believed. The customer service staff needs to be on their toes all the time and serve for a longer duration. The fast food employers realized that Canadians neither have the required skill sets nor the inclination to perform well in their jobs in this sector.
According to asianpacificpost.com, the meat processing industry was controlled by a few large companies for a long time. This industry also became dependent on the immigrant workers. A majority of the production plants had unions and the pay was very high. This arrangement was, however, disturbed owing to technical and economic factors.
The smaller production units could not easily hire the local labourers as the job was risky and tough. Here, the pay was low and it did not require a lot of skills. The companies then tried to employ workers from the regions of Canada that had high rates of unemployment. This did not yield the expected results. Thus, the meat processing companies secured the consent to employ contractual immigrant workers.
The pay, however, is still low. The poultry processing units that employ immigrant workers offer initial pay, which is quite low.
The single factor across these sectors that made employment of Canadians difficult for the companies was poor pay and work conditions. The changes that are being proposed to the TFW rules must focus on the welfare of both the workers and the companies. For instance, it is opined that the pay for any of the jobs under this program must be at least twenty-five percent higher than the minimum pay.
The changes in the TFW provisions must necessitate companies to show that they have sufficiently improved by implementing better practices such as better work conditions and increased pay for the workers in Canada prior to seeking immigrant workers. If not, the program would result in creating a class of immigrant workers who are hired in less attractive occupations, resulting in a disparity of pay in Canada.